Priest leaves parish over gay porn controversy

Father Martin McVeigh, who was the centre of a media storm last month, leaves his parish protesting his innocence

Priest leaves parish over gay porn controversy
29 April 2012

The Irish priest who ‘inadvertently’ projected images of gay pornography during a school meeting has asked to leave his parish.

Father Martin McVeigh of St. Mary's School in Pomeroy was the centre of a media storm last month after he had shown the hardcore pictures during a PowerPoint presentation at the school.

Parents said he fled the room after 16 pictures of gay porn had been shown, and some called for his resignation.

In a statement made today (29 April), McVeigh apologised ‘for the hurt caused’ and his ‘failure to check his presentation in advance.’

However, he said: ‘I was not responsible for the presence of the offending images and in this respect I ask you to accept my innocence.’

The priest confirmed he had destroyed the memory stick that contained the images prior to an investigation made by the church.

He said: ‘After the images were inadvertently shown, I immediately removed the memory stick from the laptop. In my shock and upset and in my concern to ensure that the images would never be shown again, I destroyed it later that evening.’

McVeigh described the past month as ‘the most difficult’ of his life and said he was taking sabbatical leave.

He added: ‘In the hope of bringing resolution and healing to the division and pain within the parish, I have taken the decision to ask Cardinal Brady to allow me to leave the parish of Pomeroy.

‘The memory of this awful episode will remain with me for the rest of my life.’

Cardinal Brady accepted McVeigh’s leave, and said he believed the priest had no prior knowledge of the material on the memory stick.

Brady issued an update on the continuing investigation, saying McVeigh’s laptop had been forensically examined and no inappropriate imagery had been found.  

HAVE YOUR SAY

MORE TOP STORIES

No thumbnail available

A gay Ugandan on the best way to tackle homophobia in Africa

As IDAHOT approaches, Ugandan gay rights activist Tony Kitara reflects on the past, present and future of homophobia in his country
No thumbnail available

Vietnam diversity festival draws hundreds

See the best photos of the event inside
No thumbnail available

Anti-gay 'culture of death' party slammed in Philippines

LGBT political party Ladlad fears homophobic Ang Prolife group will 'oppress' marginalized Filipinos if elected as party list
No thumbnail available

Why Barney Frank will not be inviting President Obama to his gay wedding

Explains the congressman: 'It would ruin the party to have the Secret Service'
No thumbnail available

Gay marriage vote in Illinois delayed at least until next week

Still a chance vote could take place during current legislative session
No thumbnail available

Cover shoots and hangovers, London's new gay podcast

Introducing the Dylan and Jack gay podcast, the newest take on LGBTI London from the eyes of two young freelance journalists
No thumbnail available

Taiwanese lesbians to wed in Buddhist ceremony

First public lesbian Buddhist wedding planned for next month in northern Taiwan
No thumbnail available

Oscar nominations: AIDS film How to Survive a Plague gets nod for best documentary

Gay writer Tony Kushner nominated for screenplay for Lincoln
No thumbnail available

Jaden Smith wears dress to prom

See more photos inside
No thumbnail available

Kinky Boots performers respond to their Macy's Thanksgiving Parade critics

Macy's defends the Kinky Boots' performance at its annual Thanksgiving parade